Local Businesses Say Away Home Games Will Hurt Business

By: Michael Oder Email
By: Michael Oder Email

How important are home football games to local businesses?

That's the question many business owners answered Thursday at two informative meetings at the Hilton. The Oxford Group, an outside consulting group, is researching the economic impact of Texas A&M playing a football season out of town while they remodel Kyle Field.

Business owners pretty much agree the result would be devastating. A&M Football runs the Bryan/College Station community during the fall. When the boys in Maroon and White are playing at Kyle, the town is energized. If that energy leaves for a season, what happens to the local economy?

Can businesses survive?

In a warehouse just off Highway 6 in College Station, there is constant motion.

Tents washing and drying at Party Time Rentals in College Station mean business is good.

For now.

"Well, I don't know that worry is the word that anyone can use right now," admits Sylvia Norton. She knows that Aggie football tailgates don't happen overnight.

"We work through logistics, design and availability of everything for these clients on a regular basis, for every season we go through," explains Norton.

When Texas A&M said they wanted to remodel Kyle Field and one option was to move home games out of town, business owners reacted, negatively.

"Anytime you have anything major involving athletics with [Texas] A&M that could possibly draw from this community, I think that's something that every business here would be affected with," says Norton.

"It, to me, would make a huge impact possibly in a negative way to lose that that we're all acustom to having in our own backyard."

That's why the B/CS Convention and Visitors Bureau and B/CS Chamber of Commerce are getting the numbers. Consulting firm, the Oxford Group, met with business owners to figure out what questions to ask.

"I mean, it is touch and go at this point," admits Norton. "We don't know when we're going to land or where we're going to land."

Uncertainty that's being felt across the Brazos Valley.

The Oxford Group says the economic impact study should done in 6 weeks. The Convention and Vistors Bureau will then share the results with Texas A&M before releasing them to the public. Texas A&M will make their decision on what to do with Kyle Field sometime in September.

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